by Michael dEstries
Categories: Animals
Tags: .

If the general election is the cake, than the passage of something like Proposition 2 in California is truly the icing! Proposition 2 ends the practice of confining certain animals raised for food in crates and cages so small the animals can barely move. It applies to breeding pigs, egg laying hens and veal calves.

The measure will go into effect in 2015 to give factory farms time to transition to new housing systems.

Wayne Pacelle, President and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States, said in a blog entry, “Life is going to get better for millions of farm animals.”

“And that’s thanks to so very many of you—those of you who voted for California’s Prop 2, those of you who donated time and money and support in the campaign, as well as the countless others of you who cheered from other states. This is the most ambitious ballot measure for animals ever undertaken. The energy that propelled us to victory was incredible—and that’s not overstatement. From the thousands of people who helped gather the petition signatures to put Prop 2 on the ballot to those who staffed the phone banks and knocked on doors to get out the vote, this was a show of grassroots might.”

Congrats to all those that worked so hard to get this measure passed!

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

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  • parrish


  • Bird flu

    hooray — now I can spread to ALL the chickens!

  • Kelly

    Oh good…without the protection of the farrowing crates, now the baby piggies can be crushed when their mom rolls on top of them! It’s a much more noble death than being raised for bacon anyway.

  • http://none Rose

    Finally something good for the farm animals who are forced to sacrifice their own lives, that we may live another day. But, 2015? That means millions of farm animals will live in agony for another 7 years. Though I am very happy about this victory, my heart aches for the pain animals will suffer for a good long while to come.

  • Eva

    This is so exciting and amazing! I have so much hope for all the animals of the world. I only wish this would be happening sooner.


    I am an abolitionist when it comes to animals… but regardless… I think this is awesome. I want was best for all animals and all living things :-)

    I am very happy for progress and people do care there is hope.

  • Eevee

    I hope this is the catalyst that sparks a movement that sweeps main stream America.

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  • parrish

    Oh Kelly — pigs DID exist before the invent of factory farms and gestation crates. The idea that a mother pig will kill her baby if she isn’t constricted to a miserable cage is just plain silly. Luckily the majority of Californians recognize that!

    Bird Flu- Let us not forget that Bird Flu was started BECAUSE of filthy conditions at factory farms. Check this out:

  • VeggieTart

    Bird flu and other illnesses crop up as a result of intense confinement.

    And Kelly, for thousands of years, mother pigs have been nursing their litters in nature without fear of crushing them. The idea that pigs have to be in crates so they don’t crush their babies is poppycock used to justify cruel confinement in wood and metal crates.

    Maybe someday state legislatures will get a clue and outlaw the cruelest practices in animal industry instead of having voter initiatives outlaw them.

  • parrish

    Ha! VeggieTart, you and I are on the same page!

  • Drew

    Question 3, the initiative that bans greyhound racing in MA also passed!

  • Kelly

    HMMMM…that’s funny. I just visited a research farm that is comparing the mortality rates of pigs born in farrowing crates and in a deep litter system. They loose MORE THAN TWO TIMES as many piglets in the deep litter barn due to crushing and suffocation.

    Of course pigs existed before farrowing crates. They just lost more of the babies. The crates were invented to PREVENT DEATH LOSS of baby pigs.

    …and FYI sows don’t “fear” crushing their babies. It happens, and the sow has no clue except that maybe there’s one less snout suckling. Animals do not fear loss of their babies. They MIGHT realize that one is missing…maybe act a little confused…that’s about it, no fear involved.

  • Egg Head

    This will cost California thousands of jobs and hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost revenues. In addition, the cost of eggs will sky rocket and poorer people will have a more difficult time getting protein in their diets. The most likley source for eggs to come from is Mexico where the animals will have much worse lives. I hardly think it will benefit CA or chickens in general.

  • Egg Head

    Also – bird flu is predominantly in wild animals – not factory farms. Getting birds out of confinement will increase the chances of more birds being in contact with bird flu. Research the disease in Asia.

  • Dinu Kane

    I am so happy to hear this great news! Worth the mass texts I sent out :) You guys did a wonderful job. THANK YOU!!!! HOORAY!!!!


    What is good is that people are thinking about the welfare of animals here. IF it is better or worst that is a different story and that must be addressed. Cages are terrible so that is the first thing has to go. Next should be Space made available for all animals and so on… Now people in California are more aware and want more compassion for animals. That is a good sign. That means Vegans can reach those people. I am optimistic. If it could all end now I would be for it. I wish it were that way but people are slow to let go of old habbits.

  • skippy

    The HSUS plans to jerk farm animals away from farmers who dont have the money to make those changes. I figure they will take 10 million animals away from farmers in the 5 states who have those laws. The HSUS will kill them with there green poison and dump there bodies in land fills. Theres a dangerous level of e coli in the water in a number of states thought to be the product of the millions of killed dogs in the landfill. Is California ready to deal with un drinkable water? Its just a matter of time before the green poison shows up in the water in all 50 states.

  • parrish

    Egg Head: That’s simply NOT true. Check out this Los Angeles times article that exposes the truth about Bird Flu. The idea that it came from “wild birds” is simply a misnomer – pure poultry propaganda.

    While I don’t agree with your number about the jobs lost, I expect that it WILL raise the price of eggs and I don’t think that’s a bad thing at all. First off, there are plenty of plant sources of protein that are not only better for one’s pocket book, but also better for one’s health. Secondly, its time that Americans recognize that the word “cost” means more than just monetary value. What is the moral “cost” that our country is paying for the cruel and unscrupulous treatment of our fellow animals? Europe has already banned battery cages on a national level, and I suspect that the passing of Prop 2 will be the beginning of an American poultry reform that is unlike anything we’ve ever seen.

    I have a sneaky suspicion that you are somehow involved in the opposition of Proposition 2, and while you are welcome to your thoughts and ideas, it will soon be illegal to act upon those. By 2015 battery cages, gestation crates and veal crates will all be outlawed in the state of California and our country will be a better, stronger place for it!

  • Laurie Herndon -


  • Brady

    Kelly is right. All of the uneducated people that are writing here have probably never been in a farrowing house. Most have no concept of what a farrowing crate actually is. What people are doing is called anthropomorphism-projecting human feelings onto animals. Sows don’t fear much, they are very calm and content in farrowing crates. And from what I know, Prop 2 has nothing to do with farrowing crates, only gestation crates.

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  • FarmGirl

    Half of ya’ll who voted and are for this cause have no idea what goes on at a farm. I’m sure yall havem’t even seen pigs being born or even processed them. Gestation crates are not inhumane or cruel at all. They are designed to keep a sow from crushing her piglets. This going to hurt rather than help. Ya’ll are completely oblivious!


    On Parrishes comment….

    Word! I agree

  • The Science Commenter

    Bird Flu and other nutjobs:

    The animals will roam freely, but they don’t have passports yet.

    They can’t go to China and catch bird flu from overseas business rendezvous.

  • ryan

    This is indeed a great step for the decent treatment of animals everywhere.

    I grew up on a farm, I know the happenings of things.

    The reason some of you are stating that the sows with crush the babies stems for a whole different reason that hopefully will soon be addressed. That reason is that in effort to maximize profits, too many animals are confined to too small of a space. Give an animal proper space and you’ll have nothing to worry about.
    Of course you have to worry about little ones getting crushed when you have 100 mature pigs and 400 babies in a space designed to hold only 100 pigs in the first place, your failure to calcuate proper safe natural capacity is your own downfall.
    I do hope that many farmers go out of business due to this act, it serves them right. Where I grew up my grandfather knew the importance of space to animals and they always had proper accomodations. I do not come down on those trying to make a living by raising the animals, but get real, if your trying to profit from these animals don’t you want to make sure that they are treated properly??? If you sold cars for your business wouldn’t you take extra care to make sure that the cars were properly maintained, and that you had a good amount of space to work with the cars, show the cars, and whatnot? For the money spent on the cages and the time spent trying to justify the inhumanities that you do, you could have just as well bought a slightly larger parcel of land and not had to worry about anything because you would be giving your product an appropriate amount of space.

    Hurray for animals!

    PS I am not a vegan or anything close but I do believe that you should treat all products that you profit from in the same manner, mistreat your product and well you’ll get whats coming to you.

  • Ranch girl

    Wow remarkable how far people will go to be in control and then make these hypocitic comments about what they have done. Where as I agree there are some cases of cruelty to animals that exits but these protests and “new laws” make them sound like every person raising animals are cruel to animals. Come on people get educated before you open your mouth.

    As for the “vegans” reaching us, if you want to eat just vegetables eat them but please do not impose your decisions on the rest that want to eat meat in there diet ans recent studies have proven contrary to your boost of health benefits. God gave us incisors for a reason!

    Thank goodness the boosters weren’t around in Biblical days when they scarificed animals for varies reason….can’t wait to get God’s take on that one!!

  • wowurkidding

    i cannot believe you were all for this! not only will our food prices go up, but now we will start importing chickens and animals from mexico and brazil and all these countries infested with disease. so yay for prop 4… bring on the samonella…..
    fact of the matter is they are going to die anyways, they are raised for food and that is it. i love animals, but the truth is the truth.

  • wowurkidding

    i mean prop 2

  • Brady

    Just like 99.9% of people that voted for this, you all don’t know the difference between a gestation crate and a farrowing crate. Learn it. There are no piglets getting crushed in gestation crates.

  • fbr

    Like Brady pointed out, the vast majority of people voting on this proposition were not qualified to do so. Democracy is about voting to elect representatives who’s job it is to study issues like this in detail and in the wider context and finally draft legislation.

  • The Science Commenter


    not if more regulations are put into effect to stop the importation of meat…ha-one day meat could be so expensive and hard to get it will almost be like contraband.


    Ranch Girl… you make strong claims no one is imposing anything on you. So calm down… you obviously have very strong views and opinions…

    Let me state facts…
    China study aka the largest comprehensive study on diet and disease was done over 20 years and show that the more dairy and meat people consumed the more heart disease and cancer people had. Oxford, Cornell two non dummy schools took this study… So keep doing what your doing and if your lucky you may not be affected. But just because you can play Russian roulette does not mean you should.

    Read Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Neal Barnard, Dr. Fuhrman and the list goes on… and you will see that these guys mean business when it comes to health.

    No one is against you but we are trying to show you what you think is fact is actually being disproven. Human K9s are not for eating meat. Plus feel free to run on the Savanna and chase Gazelle go ahead and jump on and take down your prey with your teeth and sharp claws… :-)

  • fbr

    RAIN-RA, historical correlations do not imply causation. Just because meat and dairy consumption goes up at the same time as heart disease and cancer goes up, it does not imply the two are linked in any way. Meat can be a part of a healthy diet and meat can be a part of an unhealthy diet. Just as you can have a healthy or an unhealthy vegetarian diet.

    Humans didn’t have to take down pray with teeth and claws because we used our opposable thumbs and a big brain instead. And at least my teeth have worked very nicely for eating meat, just as for the majority of our species.


    watch and learn FBR and anyone who wants to learn more about human body and why we should eat plants.

    don’t be lazy and watch.

    Pick up your copy of the China Study and read it before you make get defensive.

  • applesauce


    Those businesses make enough money for that to happen in a sooner amount of time.

    but alas, I am really happy about this. it just shows that once people realize what is happening to animals, they feel sympathy and want to do something.

    hopefully we can learn from this campaign and continue success a cross the globe!


    Look everyone who is against vegans… please understand vegans are not trying to make your life worse. It seems like so many non vegans think vegans are a threat. vegans are just creating awareness that is it. Knowledge is power right… so do some research out there. and please not from studies that are funded by the same industries that support bad behaviors. It seems like so many people are going out of their way to just find good news about their bad habbits. Stop and think for a second. Do you care about the environment? Do you care about your health? Do you care about human welfare? And some of you might even love animals. Stop hating and start learning the truth. I came from a fast-food loving junkie spent two years of my life researching nutrition 8 hours a day and it brought me to see a better side of health. Which is why I became Vegan. Open your eyes. Don’t just see accept what your family and culture tell you. Think how long smoking has been around and how long did it take people to wake up to its dangers. Doctors even use to recommend cigarettes. Start learning you have nothing to loose…

  • BAT

    The measure did not say that all the farms have to let their animals roam free. It made a law requiring “humane” treatment on animals bred for consumption. Are you really that upset about giving live stock enough room to turn around?

    I just have to guess that those of you who do not believe animals can feel fear are so far out of touch with reality I don’t have the time or energy to convince you to buy a puppy or kitten. All animals have pain, fear, happiness, sadness; it is not solely humans who have emotions… idiots. -so selfish. -just enough room to turn around and not stand in their own feces, and it’s just too much for people to ask of livestock breeders…it’s a shame, seriously a shame.
    I voted for Prop 2! -and just had to say something. I’m so glad that today Barak is president, and there are enough people in California whom believe in humane treatment of animals to pass Prop 2.
    It is a shame it will take so long to go into effect. (oh yeah, heard egg prices were already being jacked-up prior to the passage, I believe there is some investigating goin on)
    Are all Republicans Fascist Pigs? -I’m sorry, I’m meant greedy, bible-thumping people who believe God created everything on Earth solely for there consumption and pleasure? All of you? That would make sense, it’s the only way to understand your point of view. Rhetoric and Propaganda! That is the only words they will listen to. No rational arguement goes unpunished by the admonishment of such monumental proportions from people who don’t know anything but what their church and Fox News told them.

  • phiya

    I voted for prop 2, too! I’m a vegetarian, and my reason for being was not so much for not hurting animals, but more on how meet is stored, handled and processed. If I can see that animals are being treated more humanely, and not being injected with hormone cocktails, then I MAY(big one) consider going back to meat.

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  • macy june

    Wow…judging by the comments from people against prop 2, there are some SICK people out there! YAY for the wonderful victory of Prop 2!!

  • Adriana

    Prop 2 does not apply to farrowing crates (for pigs who have given birth), only gestation crates (for pregnant pigs). Farrowing crates are still legal, so worries about crushed piglets are baseless.

  • fbr

    RAIN-RA, that video is complete rubbish. “Humans are not designed to eat meat.” Sure, humans are not designed. Period. The argument made in that video is mind bafflingly ridiculous. Carnivore (and omnivore) is a definition of a species that eats meat. Observe that majority of the members of our species eats, and has historically eaten, meat if given a chance. Trying to argue that we are herbivores because of some physical feature is down right delusional. It’s also self-contradictory: on one hand we are not “designed” to catch other animals to eat, on the other we are the most successful species ever in catching and eating other animals.

    This China Study that you refer to is all about correlations. Like I said before: Historical correlations are meaningless. Completely meaningless.

    If you actually give the above two sources any value, you don’t need to do more research, you need to first learn HOW to do research. Huge mountains of “research” are published every year, yet only a small portion of it is actually useful. The rest are propaganda or simply nonsense.

    Nobody sees vegans as a “threat” as you suggest. Anyone has a perfect right to be a vegan, just as everyone has a perfect right to eat meat.

  • Anonymous

    Though the intent of Prop 2 sounds good– I don’t think that the mass public realizes that this will cost us Californians a lot. Lost jobs, an increase in the price of eggs, and a lot of lost revenue. This is going to seriously affect our agricultural and farming industry over the next decade and the years to come. Eggs are currently a very affordable source of complete protein (supply all amino acids) and major part of the American Diet. I guess if you’re a proponent of “survival of the richest”–then voting yes on Prop 2 is ok. I don’t think most of California realizes what a mistake that we have all made by passing this Prop.

  • The Science Commenter

    fb-just likes to argue:

    Correlations aren’t meaningless. They do show a relationship exists, just don’t prove anything.

  • fbr

    The Science Commenter, you have just lost the right to put the word “Science” in your pseudonym. Correlations do NOT show that a relationship exists. They absolutely do not. Feel free to ask anyone with any training science or statistics, heck ask anyone who has passed a high school science class.

  • The Science Commenter

    Um, fb go R-gue with your right hand:

    Correlations do show relationships between 2 variables. That is the whole point-to describe the degree of the relationship. They just don’t prove 1 variable caused the other (or vice versa). That would be causation. Did I say correlations show causation? No.

    Read the whole comment before getting so turned on to r-gue. Then, you won’t get so excited and have the problem of premature e-yak-ulation.

  • fbr

    The Commenter, I did read what you said. Let me say this one more time slowly: Correlations. Do. Not. Show. Relationships.

    The world is full of completely unrelated time series which show strong correlations due to pure chance.

  • John O’Malley

    Fair enough, but animals getting more rights passed at an election then Gay and Lesbians? A bit backwards I think.


    Look Fbr I guess you just won’t understand things. The China Study is not just about watching people eat more meat and say hey they got more cancer and heart disease. They did blood work, the took cholesterol tests, blood pressure and several other tests. Ignoring it is your own issue not mine. I still will be doing what I do. I am not coming off as as angry or anthying since you can tell someones tone when their writing. I just would hope you saw the different light.

    I truely understand where your coming from because you will defend your meat eating no matter what the evidence says. That is just you and how you are. I don’t care to prove to you anything. I just mention that evidence is out there and you can accept it or you can deny it. Like some do with global warming…

    You can’t deny that the majority of whole food eating vegans have lower cholesterol
    and plac formaion in the their arteries and cases of colon cancer. The blood work and the scientific data is there.


    ABSTRACT The Oxford Vegetarian Study is a prospective
    study of 6000 vegetarians and 5000 nonvegetarian control sub-
    jects recruited in the United Kingdom between 1980 and 1984.
    Cross-sectional analyses of study data showed that vegans had
    lower total- and LDL-cholesterol concentrations than did meat
    eaters; vegetarians and fish eaters had intermediate and similar
    values. Meat and cheese consumption were positively associated,
    and dietary fiber intake was inversely associated, with total-cho-
    lesterol concentration in both men and women. After 12 y of fol-
    low-up, all-cause mortality in the whole cohort was roughly half
    that in the population of England and Wales (standardized mor-
    tality ratio, 0.46; 95% CI, 0.42, 0.51). After adjusting for smok-
    ing, body mass index, and social class, death rates were lower in
    non-meat-eaters than in meat eaters for each of the mortality end-
    points studied [relative risks and 95% CIs: 0.80 (0.65, 0.99) for
    all causes of death, 0.72 (0.47, 1.10) for ischemic heart disease,
    and 0.61 (0.44, 0.84) for all malignant neoplasms]. Mortality
    from ischemic heart disease was also positively associated with
    estimated intakes of total animal fat, saturated animal fat, and
    dietary cholesterol. Other analyses showed that non-meat-eaters
    had only half the risk of meat eaters of requiring an emergency
    appendectomy, and that vegans in Britain may be at risk for
    iodine deficiency. Thus, the health of vegetarians in this study is
    generally good and compares favorably with that of the nonveg-
    etarian control subjects. Larger studies are needed to examine
    rates of specific cancers and other diseases among vegetarians.
    Am J Clin Nutr1999;70(suppl):525S–31S.

    I guess it takes sometimes a life changing experience for you to realize and if and when that day comes you will understand.

  • parrish

    John- When animals are allowed to get married then you’re allowed to use that as a valid argument. Gay and Lesbians aren’t confined to horrifically cruel conditions for their entire lives and then slaughtered in brutal ways. Comparing Proposition 8 and Proposition 2 the way you have is like comparing astronauts and hula-hoops.


    So if you want to ignore that data out there please go ahead. That is on you. I can keep throwing evidence after evidence… at the end I think it won’t matter because you really just like the taste of meat and that is the real reason and that truely explains why you can’t give it up no matter how many arteries it clogs.

  • John O’Malley

    I think not being able to visit my loved one on their deathbed is a pretty “horrifically cruel condition”.

  • parrish

    John- As do we — which is why Ecorazzi extensively covered the resistance to Prop 8. However, I can’t agree that not being able to visit a loved one in the hospital is the same as a lifetime of torture and extreme cruelty. Furthermore, as an oppressed people I would hope that you support the liberation of other oppressed beings. Compassion and understanding isn’t case specific.

  • Jason

    Dear Parrish,

    I think it is great that you are passionate about animals being treated humanely, however, aren’t you jumping from 0 to 10? Why can’t we fight for the animals to be treated well instead of not eating meat?

    You are not going to get everyone to stop eating meat so why not get the meat eaters on your side to stop the cruelty instead of trying to get them to stop eating meat?


  • parrish

    Jason- I’ve never ever tried to “get everyone to stop eating meat.” I believe that we all have a responsibility to do what we can for our planet and fellow beings – the specifics of that responsibility is an individual choice. Proposition 2 has NOTHING to do with vegetarianism. What Prop 2 does is prevent certain extreme cruel methods that are standards in factory farms. Californians understood that, which is why more than 64 percent voted in favor of Prop 2. On a personal note, 90 percent of my friends are meat-eaters, as are my parents and extended family. While I work hard to spread the benefits of vegetarianism, I have no grief with those choose a different lifestyle than I.

  • Jason

    Thanks for clarifying. I am on your side :)

  • fbr

    RA-RAIN, you are obviously not a trained researcher so it’s pointless to argue about the value of these types of studies or the methodology used. The citation that you had is all about correlations. It does not prove anything. It seems to be a very common phenomenon these days that people hold issues like vegetarianism or (yes!) climate change with religious conviction, citing studies that they do not understand just like the Christians cite the Bible.

    You’re right on one point though. I do enjoy meat. The world is full of people who are living, and have lived, a perfectly healthy life with meat in their diet. I don’t have to “defend my meat eating no matter what the evidence says”, I have every right to do so and I carry the risks by myself. If you think vegetarian diet has no risks you’re just delusional.


    correlation or not or however you want to look at studies your stating no facts. Your point is all opinion based. This is because that is all you have to go on. You look at rare situations where people have so called super genes like smokers who live to 100 smoking their whole life. Yeah their are random situations where people no matter how much damage they do to their bodies they will still survive. That does not go for most people. If you want to state rare situations go ahead. I will keep bringing you facts. Vegetarian diet is not what I aim for, since dairy is involved and that is bad as well. And yeah your right a Vegan who eats french fries and drinks soda and eats crap is still at risk of being unhealthy. That is why I stated a whole food plant based diet. Show me one case where someone ate steak and fought off their cancer. OR reversed their heart disease… Go ahead I give you a 30 day challenge and just eat meat no plants no fruits and vegetables or plant based sources. See how long you last before getting malnutrition. Now see the opposite with a plant based diet not only will you get everything you need but you will thrive



    watch more information…

  • Ranch girl

    RAIN-RA, what a rude person you are. You are one of those that have a different view of how to live and when someone doesn’t agree you get really defensive but then turn the situation like the world is out to get you. If you like it and it works for you great….Just do it and stop pushing the rest who don’t, state it and let them decide if they care to take it or leave it!!!!!!
    I as a matter of fact regularly see a ND and have never been told I have to be a vegan to be healthy. Everyone is different and what may work for one may not work for the other. I have known people that believed the hype on being vegan and have become very ill only to find incorporating meat back in the diet put them back on track so a fact that it may not apply to all.
    Choose what works for you…..sorry it doesn’t work for me but it is my choice.

  • kyleSF

    Power to the people! It’s amazing what we can do when we unite for a cause. I’m surprised by the nearly 40% who voted No on 2. They must be cold, heartless people who are extremely gullible to the scare tactics brought on by the No on 2 campaign.

    Is it so terrible to give living beings a little more room before people slice them up for their selfish tastes? I think not.

  • Gabriele C. Hill

    Take away the meanness, cruelty & give enjoyment. Make this a better place & you will have a better world. I am absolutely amazed that human kind is able to feel the joyful light of hope to make life peaceful & a quality time for those who trully need this miracle happen. Please make it happen now, as this is urgent!

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  • Alice

    Oh, Kelly. If only you knew the conditions that these pigs live in.
    The pigs probably wished they were dead. They only stayed alive in these conditions because of drugs. Otherwise they’d all have died.
    I think that the obvious vote was yes.
    Oh, and prop 2 is not about being vegetarian, it’s about preventing animals from being confined. People went veggie BECAUSE people were treating animals this way. As a protest.

  • Alice

    You can’t possibly compare this to proposition 8. The gays aren’t being locked in cages where the can’t stand up or turn around, never seeing the light of day until they’re headed to their deaths. They are not given drugs so that they grow so obese that they can’t even stand on their own legs. They don’t get their toes burned off without pain killers. They can live reasonably normal lives, and even live together. They just can’t get married.